Ashland University pitcher Emlyn Knerem's (Brunswick, Ohio) name is pronounced with a hard "K."
That's the same way she pitches, with a hard "K." Just ask the Lake Erie Storm.
On Tuesday (Apr. 26) at Brookside Park, Knerem pitched 12 scoreless innings and notched a pair of wins as Ashland knocked off the Storm, 5-0 and 8-0. Knerem is 19-4. She has over a year left in her college career and for the Storm, that must seem like an eternity.
A year ago in Painesville, Ohio, Knerem pitched a five-inning perfect game against LEC and then came on in the second game to get the save. The Storm didn't manage a hit off her that day. On Wednesday, it took LEC until the sixth inning of the first game before it managed its first hit off Knerem, a single to center field by Jeniffer Gratz. That was the only hit by LEC. In the first 12 innings that Knerem faced the Storm (9-31/1-21 GLIAC), she did not allow a safety.
In Wednesday's first game, Knerem did not walk a batter and struck out 15. She threw 95 pitches. The Eagles (25-11/17-3) got her two runs in the second. The first came home on a sacrifice fly by second baseman Cayla Seidler (Massillon, Ohio/Washington). The second run scored on a single up the middle by outfielder Erica Miller (Indianapolis, Ind./Franklin Central).
The Eagles broke open the game with three runs in the sixth inning. All of those came home on a homer down the left field line by catcher Tawna Garver (Mansfield, Ohio/Hillsdale). This was the second consecutive game where Garver swatted a homer. She has three for the season.
All of those runs came off of starter and loser Dawn Ondercin (2-12). Ashland had seven hits, two by shortstop Bri Woody (Cleveland, Ohio/Magnificat).
In the second game, AU scored once in the second inning and three times each in the fourth and fifth innings to go in front, 7-0. Seidler banged out her third home run of the season in the second inning and drove in two more runs in the third inning with a double to left. Third baseman Alyssa Kelley (Mentor, Ohio) was 2-for-4 with a homer and two RBI and Garver was 3-for-3 with a double. Ashland had 13 hits, six of the extra-base variety.
Knerem pitched the front five innings and allowed three hits. She did not walk a batter and whiffed seven. On the year, Knerem has struck out 218 batters in 144.2 innings. She is sixth in the nation in strikeouts per seven innings (10.3) and 18th in strikeouts.
Logan Hursey (Zanesville, Ohio/John Glenn) pitched the final two frames.
Sara Shields (5-13) started for Lake Erie and went 3.2 innings. She took the loss.